European Innovation Scoreboard , 2008
This is the eighth edition of the European Innovation Scoreboard (EIS), which provides a comparative assessment of the innovation performance of EU Member States, under the EU Lisbon Strategy. The methodology for the 2008 EIS is revised compared to that of 2007 with a stronger focus on services, non-technological aspects, and outputs of innovation. The analysis of trends over time is now based on changes in the absolute values of the indicators over a five year period, rather than the previous approach of measuring trends relative to the EU average.
The EIS 2008 includes innovation indicators and trend analyses for the EU27 Member States as well as for Croatia, Turkey, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland.
The EU is improving its performance, especially in human resources, broadband and venture capital and decreasing the innovation gap with the US and Japan
The revised methodology allows a new analysis of the trends in innovation performance at EU level. This shows that the EU is making overall progress, with particularly strong increases in the numbers of graduates in science, engineering, social sciences and humanities, both at first degree and graduate level. Other areas of strong increase are in broadband and in venture capital investments, although the statistics do not yet capture the impact of the economic downturn in 2008.
The 2008 EIS includes a separate analysis of the EU27 performance compared with the United States and Japan based on a set of comparable indicators. This shows that there has been a continued improvement in the EU’s performance relative to the US and a recent improvement relative to Japan. Nevertheless, there remains a significant gap between the EU and these two other regions and there appears to be some slowing down in the catching up with the US in recent years.
The EU’s catching up is due to the improvements in graduate numbers, broadband and venture capital, but also to strong relative improvements in public private linkages (as measured by joint scientific publications). The remaining gap with both the US and Japan is concentrated in four areas: international patenting (as measured under the patent cooperation treaty), public private linkages and numbers of researchers (despite the improvements in both these areas), and business R&D expenditures (where both EU and US values have stagnated, while Japan’s have increased).